[b-hebrew] yhwh pronunciation

Yigal Levin leviny1 at mail.biu.ac.il
Wed Jul 20 01:34:26 EDT 2005

Actually, the final He seems to have been first used as a mater lectonis for
an O sound, as in the names Shiloh, Shelomoh etc. and in several 9-8th
century inscriptions. So maybe at one point it was pronounced "Yahwoh"?


----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Peter Kirk" <peterkirk at qaya.org>
To: "Rolf Furuli" <furuli at online.no>
Cc: <b-hebrew at lists.ibiblio.org>
Sent: Wednesday, July 20, 2005 4:08 AM
Subject: Re: [b-hebrew] yhwh pronunciation

> On 19/07/2005 23:03, Rolf Furuli wrote:
> >...
> >
> >The form YHW is found in the Aramaic Elephantine Papyri from the fifth
> >century B.C.E. Wowels are lacking, so we do not know whether it was
> >peronounced as YEHU, YAHU, YEHO, YAHO, or even with other vowels. ...
> >
> Or indeed this form could have been pronounced YAHWE, as these letters
> predated the wide use of matres lectionis, and most interpreters
> understand the final he of YHWH (however it is pronounced) as a mater
> lectionis.
> ...
> >A little less than 150 names in the OT ends in YAH, and a few begins
> >with YAH. But those beginning with YAH never have "o" or "u" as the next
> >vowel (e.g. YAHO-; YAHU-). But there are several names that begins with
> >YEHO-. This means that an argument in favor of shewa being the first
> >vowel of YHWH is much stronger than the argument in favor of "a". ...
> >
> Not at all. There is a general phonological rule by which an original
> qamats in this position is reduced to sheva, and a patah is impossible
> in this position.
> -- 
> Peter Kirk
> peter at qaya.org (personal)
> peterkirk at qaya.org (work)
> http://www.qaya.org/
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